Wrong to blame a community: Unnikrishnan

K Unnikrishnan, father of Sandeep Unnikrishnan, an NSG commando slain in the Mumbai terror attacks, said on Wednesday that the government’s decision to execute Ajmal Kasab, the prime accused in the mayhem, was in the right direction.

“There have been many people trying to instil a sense of vendetta in my mind that it is people of a particular community who indulge in such things. I have friends from all the communities and I do not believe in this theory. No community does this. The problem is religious fanaticism and some individuals who believe in it. It is wrong to brand a community because of that,” he told Deccan Herald.

Sitting beside a showcase decorated with a portrait of his son gifted by his Commanding Officer Col Negi at his parent regiment (Bihar Regiment), Unnikrishnan says the meme­nto is not only to rejoice, but also tread a cautious path to solve the larger problem.

“Execution of a foot soldier is just one step. We will have to bring to book the perpetrators of 26/11. We need to be more alert in order to completely eradicate terrorism from our society,” he said. Improving relations with Pakistan will be the most important move in this direction, he said.

Not that he had no time to rejoice. The pride his son has brought to the family by sacrificing his life for the nation is pushing Unnikrishnan senior to think more than just celebration at this juncture. “I completely respect the procedures that have to be followed.

But, I also think that this could have been done at least two years ago. I am not complaining of the delay... I’m only saying it could have been faster,” he said, adding that he was extremely satisfied with the government’s decision. The road ahead for Sandeep’s parents is to try to keep his memory alive and be wherever their son’s name is being invoked and remembered. “Let God give me a long life so that I can go wherever my son’s name is used. I have gone to UP, to small schools where Sandeep’s name has been used,” says Unnikrishnan.

Sandeep, a Major in the Army attached to the Special Action Group of the NSG, was killed by terrorists on November 26, 2008.

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